There are 2 pectin products that work well for jams and jellies without white sugar. Using either honey, maple syrup, fruit juice, stevia, or no sugar at all (relying on the natural sweetness of the fruit), we can still enjoy the simple delights that we have always loved!
As all of you know, white sugar is really hard on our bodies. It feeds candida yeast and cancer cells, lowers your immunity, increases inflammation, and speeds aging. Here are 25 key reasons you will want to dramatically cut your sugar intake.
The Pectin Products
Pomona Universal Pectin gels without the high amounts of sugar required in conventional pectin brands. It uses calcium water to achieve this. It comes in a little packet inside the Pomona’s box. You simply mix the contents of the packet with the required amount of water. Calcium water stores in the refrigerator for a number of months. But with all the jam you could make this summer, it probably will get used up before it expires!
The jams and jellies get their ‘set’ from adding calcium water to the fruit. Here is a good YouTube video link if you want to watch it done. —->
Now, here’s what’s great about Pomona’s Pectin.
It’s made of 100% citrus pectin, derived from the bitter white pith just under the peel. Many fruits have natural pectin (apples are high in it). Some fruits are very low in pectin (peaches, apricots), and as such, require more to gel the jam. In other brands of pectin, lots of sugar is also required to set the gel. Somewhere I saw a recipe calling for as 6 cups of sugar for 5 cups of mashed fruit. With Pomona’s recipe directions, if you do use white sugar, as little as 3/4 cup is required for 4 cups of fruit. You can also use 1/2 cup of honey or other alternative sweeteners such as stevia or simply no sugar.
Traditional Canned Jams Using Honey
I wanted to do a test with Pomona Pectin and the calcium water. I used raw honey (since I had no white sugar on hand). I cringing as I stirred it in knowing cooking just killed all the live enzymes. I only made 2 pint jars to see if it really set firmly using the calcium water.
It worked (really no surprise) and tasted great.
Low/No Sugar Freezer Jam (Raw)
Next, I made strawberry jam using the freezer jam recipe (inside the Pomona pectin box) which allows for raw honey or fruit juice (no cooking, no water bath canning) (and gives directions for many kinds of fruit). Again, it set up beautifully with this pectin. The sparkling ruby nectar was so fabulous, I wanted to eat it all knowing it was so much healthier for me. I had to use extreme self-control!
Freezer jam is technically a raw food product. It will keep 1 year in the freezer and up to 4 weeks in the fridge. I think it would keep much longer because of raw honey’s probiotic and antimicrobial properties, but it has never lasted long enough to test my theory!
Homemade jams beat store-bought jam every time.
Whatever brand of pectin you choose, unless you want a runny jam perfect for topping your ice cream (maybe a good thing), please always follow the directions in the box exactly.
It is chemistry, after all … which you thought you’d never use after high school!
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Thanks for reading!